Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Century Old Company Transitions to Digital Media – March 2012 M&A Activity

March deals brought dramatic contrast between the old and new. One of the companies that invented automatic typesetting over 100 years ago, Monotype, completed a landmark acquisition, while BroadSign, a leader in the distribution of electronic outdoor ads, filed for bankruptcy. For those readers that don’t know, Monotype, along with Linotype (which Monotype eventually acquired) revolutionized the printing industry with its machines that cast type from hot molten lead that was poured into molds that were assembled by keystroking. In a transaction that heralds the complete transition of this storied company to the digital media environment, Monotype completed a $50 million acquisition of Bitstream’s electronic fonts and related online font services.

BroadSign, a pioneer in software that automates the delivery of files to electronic digital signage such as billboards and point-of-purchase displays, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. But don’t expect those bright signs along the highways, mall display advertising, or the coming attractions in your local movie theatre lobby to go dark anytime soon. BroadSign is for sale through a 363 process in bankruptcy and will likely emerge to “light another day”.

In another deal highlighting the intersection of old and new, Fry Communications, a printer well known for printing direct mail, publications and directories, provided capital to Godengo in its acquisition of Texterity. The combined companies sit right at the intersection of print and online content, with services for publishers including content management and web-based and mobile applications.

In the retail and outdoor space, Vomela purchased Pratt Corporation, strengthening its presence as a supplier of store décor and point-of-purchase displays. In the outdoor wide format space, AllOver Media, which specializes in gas station and truck graphics, pumped up its capabilities, acquiring The Wide Format Shop. Vision Integrated Graphics added to its wide format capability with its acquisition of Point Imaging, specialists in grand format graphics.

In the commercial sector, in a neighbor-buys-neighbor deal, Ripon Printers acquired certain assets of Sells Printing Company - both companies are located in Wisconsin. In cross-border deals, Quad/Graphics purchased a minority interest in Manipal Technologies, a printer in India that produces a wide range of products. Multi-Color Corporation added to its international portfolio with the acquisition of Labelgraphics, printer of spirit and wine labels located in Scotland.

In addition to the aforementioned filing for BroadSign, we found three other print-related Chapter 11 filings in March, a copy shop, an envelope manufacturer and a digital printer. There were six filings for Chapter 7 liquidation during the month, including the Virginia chapter of the national printing trade association, a reprographic shop, a yellow pages advertising company, a finishing shop and two point-of-purchase companies.

2012 March - Mergers and Acquisitions in the Printing, Packaging, Paper & Related Industries

Deal Party #1
(Surviving Entity)
($Mil )

Party #1 Address

Deal Party #2
($Mil )

Party #2 Address

Deal Structure


Ripon Printers $36.6 Ripon, WI Sells Printing Company $29.1 New Berlin, WI 3/30/12 No Data Assets Acquisition
(New Direction)
Commercial printing Link
Quad/Graphics $4,324 Sussex, WI Manipal Technologies No Data Karnataka, India 3/30/12 No Data Purchase of Minority Interest Commercial, publications, packaging, security products, POP Link
(Affiliated w/ Fry Communications)
No Data Berkeley, CA Texterity No Data Southborough, MA 3/29/12 No Data Acquisition Content mngt., web-based & mobile apps for magazine publishers Link
Monotype Imaging Holdings $106.0 Woburn, MA Bitstream
(Font business unit)
$17.0 Marlborough, MA 3/20/12 $50.0 All cash merger Fonts, patents & websites Link
IBS Direct No Data King of Prussia, PA Imtek No Data Bridgeport, NJ 3/20/12 No Data Assets Acquisition Direct marketing services Link
Image Craft No Data Phoenix, AZ Qube Visual No Data Denver, CO 3/19/12 No Data Acquisition Wide format Link
Multi-Color Corporation $650.0 Cincinnati, OH Labelgraphics £13.0 Glasgow,
3/16/12 £16.5 Acquisition
(BCC Advisors)
Spirit & wine labels
Price inc. debt + 25% earnout provision
AllOver Media No Data Minneapolis, MN The Wide Format Shop No Data Minnetonka, MN 3/15/12 No Data Acquisition Outdoor wide format Link
Colorfx No Data Des Moines, IA Demco Printing No Data Boyden, IA 3/14/12 No Data Acquisition Commercial print & services
($85Mil combined revenue)
Vomela Group
(Pratt Visual Solutions)
$200.0 St. Paul, MN Pratt Corporation No Data Indianapolis, IN 3/12/12 No Data Assets Acquisition POP and store décor Link
Vision Integrated Graphics $40.0 Chicago, IL Point Imaging No Data Hobart, IN 3/9/12 No Data Acquisition Grand format Link
Keystone Printing Group
(Keystone Millbrook)
No Data Lansing, MI Millbrook Printing Company No Data Grand Ledge, MI 3/7/12 No Data Merger
(New Direction)
Comercial Printers Link
Colbert Packaging
(C and H Printing Solutions)
No Data Lake Forest, IL Haapanen Brothers No Data Gurnee, Il  3/2/12 No Data Joint Venture Pharma inserts & outserts Link
Ideal Printers
(Seebridge Media)
No Data Houston, TX PrintMailers, Inc. No Data Houston, TX 3/2/12 No Data Merger Commercial print & services Link
First Edge Solutions No Data Milwaukee, WI Print1 Direct No Data Atlanta, GA 3/1/12 No Data Acquisition On-demand, doc mngt. Link

2012 March - Bankruptcy Filings in the Printing, Packaging, Paper & Related Industries

Filing Party

($Mil )

Case #

Filing Party Address


Region & City


Attorney for Debtor

Chapter 11 Filings:
Snellbaker Printing 3/9/12 No Data 12-12315 Glenside, PA 3rd Eastern PA
Stephen Raslavich Thomas D. Bielli Copy shop
Cooley Digital Press, LLC 3/9/12 No Data 12-30393 Monroe, LA 5th Western LA
Stephen V. Callaway Rex D. Rainach Commercial printer, promotional items
RP Envelope, Inc. 3/6/12 No Data 12-50695 Austin, TX 5th Western TX
San Antonio
Leif M. Clark Kenneth P. Ferreyro Envelope mfg.
BroadSign USA, LLC 3/4/12 No Data 12-10790 Boise, ID 3rd Delaware
Brendan Linehan
Kevin Scott Mann Digital signage software
Chapter 7 Filings:
Breslin Reproduction Service, Inc. 3/29/12 No Data 12-02072 Ponce Inlet, FL 11th Middle FL
Jerry A. Funk Walter J. Snell Reprographic services
Nationwide Yellow Page Service, Inc.
(DBA Nationwide Media)
3/26/12 No Data 12-17719 Hackettstown, NJ 3rd New Jersey
Morris Stern Sam Della Fera Yellow page advertising
Printing Industries of Virginia, Inc. 3/20/12 No Data 12-31753 Ashland, VA 4th Eastern VA
Kevin R. Huennekens David K. Spiro  Trade association for print industry
G&L Print Finishing, LLC
(DBA Precision Diecutting & Embossing)
3/16/12 No Data 12-05382 Maricopa, AZ 9th Arizona      Phoenix Charles G. Case II Don J. Lawrence, Jr. Diecutting & related finishing
Permanent Impressions, Inc. 3/5/12 No Data 12-12843 Huntington Beach,
9th Central CA
Los Angeles
Catherine E. Bauer James Cover POP fabrication & printing
Media On The Run, Inc. 3/2/12 No Data 12-08295 Prospect Heights, IL 7th Northern IL
Susan Pierson
Richard M. Fogel Digital printer, POP design